Manchester Art Gallery

The Tallest of Tales: Alison Erika Forde

An exhibition that offered an opportunity to discover the captivating world of Alison Erika Forde’s art as part of the gallery’s ongoing programme to showcase emerging talent from Manchester.

Manchester Art Gallery
Saturday 27 July 2013–Sunday 10 November 2013


Alison Erika Forde is a contemporary artist who creates unique objects, rescuing unwanted mass-produced pictures and charity shop bric-a-brac and transforming them into extraordinary works of art.

For this show, 12 previously unseen works were playfully displayed together, both within and around a small wooden hut that has been specially created by the artist.

From the outside, Forde’s works and the house itself were evocative of children’s stories such as Hansel and Gretel and Little Red Riding Hood. Innocently enchanting on first look, but just like all the best fairy-tales, step inside and you’ll quickly discover things aren’t always as they seem…

Influenced by book illustrations, comic strips, folk art and kitsch, Forde creates her work in the belief that ‘one man’s trash is another man’s treasure’. Her pieces draw on her dreams and memories to produce fairytale images which are imbued with a vital mischief and dark humour.

About Alison Erika Forde

Alison Erika Forde was in born 1985, in Greater Manchester. She gained a first class BA (Hons) Fine Art from Manchester Metropolitan University in 2008 where she also won the British Airways Student Prize.

Alison Erika Forde is represented by The International 3. Her work is held in The Olbricht Collection, Collection Robert Devereux and private collections in Austria, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, USA as well as the UK.

Alison’s exhibitions include Smotherland at The International 3, Manchester, Better Out Than In at Mas Art Galeria, Barcelona, How we work at Blackburne House in Liverpool and Not at this address at Bury Art Museum.

The International 3 has also presented her work at Preview Berlin 08, VOLTA 5, Basel, The Manchester Contemporary and VOLTA New York.

Alison Erika Forde is also one third of the artists’ collective Yiiikes! whose debut exhibition The Glowing World of Snotboobs and the Severed Toe was presented at Islington Mill, Salford.

For more information visit Alison Erika Forde’s website.


Alison Erika Forde, The Lady in the Lake (detail), 2013, 110cm x 70cm Acrylic on found print. Courtesy the artist and The International 3, © Simon Pantling